SUNDAY: Take it easy and prepare a smoked turkey breast for family day. Alongside, Summer Green Bean and Corn Salad (see recipe) is delicious. Add more color to the plate with a real summer favorite, sliced tomatoes and fresh basil, and some whole-grain rolls. No one will be able to resist Peach Crumble for dessert: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Peel and slice 12 peaches (about 3 pounds) and combine with 1/4 cup white sugar; spoon into a 3-quart baking dish coated with cooking spray. Combine 1/2 cup flour, 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg and 3 tablespoons cold butter in a medium bowl. With 2 knives, cut butter into flour mixture until it resembles coarse bread crumbs; scatter over peaches. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until golden; serve warm.
Plan ahead: Save enough turkey, tomatoes and crumble for Monday.
MONDAY: Use the leftover turkey and tomatoes for Grilled Turkey, Tomato and Swiss Cheese Sandwiches. Make the sandwiches with sliced sourdough bread and Dijon mustard. Spritz sandwiches with cooking spray and grill until bread is golden and cheese is melted. Add potato salad. Warm the leftover crumble for dessert.
TUESDAY: Make dinner quick tonight and serve smoked ham steaks. Rub a Cajun seasoning blend on both sides before heating, if desired. Serve with sweet potato fries and deli broccoli salad. Make cornbread from a mix. Fresh apricots are dessert.
WEDNESDAY: Call the kids for Honey-Mustard Chicken Fingers. Heat oven to 425 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine 1/2 cup mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard and 2 tablespoons honey. Reserve half for dipping. Add 1 pound chicken strips to remaining half mixture; stir to coat. Roll strips in 1 cup crushed corn flakes. Bake 12 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Serve with reserved honey-mustard sauce. Add baked beans, carrot sticks and soft rolls. Bite into a nectarine for dessert.
THURSDAY: We enjoyed these Bella Burgers for a meatless dinner. Heat grill to medium-high and coat both sides of 4 large portobello mushrooms, 1 large red bell pepper (quartered) and 1 red onion (sliced) with cooking spray. Grill the vegetables on both sides, about 4 to 6 minutes or until lightly charred and tender. Meanwhile, whisk together 2 tablespoons Italian dressing with 2 tablespoons mayonnaise. Spread hamburger buns with dressing mixture. On bottom bun, layer lettuce, tomato, mushroom, peppers and onion. Cover with top bun. Serve immediately with steak fries (from frozen). Scoop vanilla ice cream for dessert.
Plan ahead: Save enough ice cream for Saturday.
FRIDAY: Peanut and Roasted Tomato Braised Chicken (see recipe) opens the global pantry to a delicious twist on a Zimbabwean classic. We ate the African-inspired dish over brown rice and added a crisp lettuce wedge and baguettes. For dessert, enjoy fresh plums.
SATURDAY: Entertain your friends with your own lamb chops served over couscous. Use your microwave to prepare Cauliflower au Gratin (see recipe). Add sourdough rolls. For dessert, a wedge of chilled cantaloupe with a scoop of leftover ice cream is refreshing.
Summer Green Bean and Corn Salad
1 teaspoon coarse salt
2 pounds fresh green beans, trimmed
1/4 cup Thai fish sauce
Zest of 2 limes
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup fresh corn kernels (about 2 large ears)
In a 3-quart saucepan, bring 2 quarts water and the salt to a boil. Add beans; cook 5 minutes. Drain and place beans in a large bowl of ice water. Drain again and place beans in refrigerator to cool for 30 minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk together the fish sauce, lime zest, lime juice and honey. Slowly drizzle the oil into the dressing while constantly whisking, until dressing is emulsified. Add the corn kernels to the beans. Pour dressing over salad, toss and serve. (Adapted from My Two Souths by Asha Gomez, Running Press.)
Makes 6 servings.
Nutrition information: Each serving contains approximately 203 calories, 4 g protein, 10 g fat, 28 g carbohydrate, no cholesterol, 814 mg sodium and 5 g fiber.
Carbohydrate choices: 2.
Peanut and Roasted Tomato Braised Chicken
2 teaspoons olive oil, divided use
1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
1 large yellow or white onion, chopped
2 large green bell peppers, chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
2 tablespoons unsalted creamy peanut butter
2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced fire-roasted tomatoes with their liquid
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced fresh spinach (chiffonade)
Chopped peanuts for garnish
Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add chicken; cook 1 1/2 minutes; toss and cook 1 1/2 more minutes. Remove chicken to plate and cover to keep warm; set aside.
Pour remaining oil into pan; add onion, peppers and garlic. Cook 4 to 6 minutes, stirring often. Reduce heat to medium-low; add ginger, salt and cayenne pepper and stir. Add peanut butter; stir to combine and cook 30 seconds. Add tomatoes; bring to a boil, then return chicken and accumulated liquid to pan. Bring to a boil again; reduce heat to low and simmer 20 minutes until internal temperature is 165 degrees and sauce is reduced and thickened. Spoon into 4 bowls; garnish with spinach and peanuts. (Adapted from Food and Nutrition magazine, Celestina Brunetti, RDN.)
Makes 4 servings.
Nutrition information: Each serving contains approximately 315 calories, 26 g protein, 13 g fat, 28 g carbohydrate, 106 mg cholesterol, 709 mg sodium and 7 g fiber.
Carbohydrate choices: 2.
Cauliflower au Gratin
1 medium (about 1 pound) whole cauliflower
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
Coarse salt and black pepper to taste
1 cup 2 percent milk
1 cup 50 percent reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated
Paprika for garnish
Remove outer leaves and trim stem next to cauliflower. Wash; place in a 9-inch pie plate. Cover with wax paper; microwave on 100 percent power for 6 to 8 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt butter in a large microwavable bowl. Blend in flour and seasonings. Stir in milk; cover and microwave on 100 percent power for 2 to 3 minutes, or until thickened, stirring every minute. Add cheese; stir to blend. Place cauliflower on serving plate; pour sauce over top and garnish with paprika. Serve immediately. (Adapted from Simply Scrumptious Microwaving by Lorela Wilkins and Rosemary Stancil, Random House.)
Makes 6 servings.
Nutrition information: Each serving contains approximately 136 calories, 9 g protein, 8 g fat, 10 g carbohydrate, 23 mg cholesterol, 196 mg sodium and 2 g fiber.
Carbohydrate choices: 1/2.
Susan Nicholson is an Atlanta-based cookbook author and registered dietitian. She can be reached by email:
Food on 07/11/2018
Print Headline: 7-day menu planner